Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fun home.

I know already told you about this, but I can order library books from the educational institution at which I work and these books will be sent to my office via campus mail, which is magically wonderful. I ordered a load of books on Monday and there they were yesterday, waiting for me after a long day of (potentially useful) training. It is so nice to get a pile of books delivered.

Last night instead of mouldering in front of the TV, I made a crazy veggie Reuben for the Brit and then started in on Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. I would have ripped through this book in one sitting, but I've been up late reading too many nights this week and HAVE TO GET SOME SLEEP. So I picked up the book again this morning and finished it on the bus, and guess what that meant? It meant I had to put my sunglasses on before I got off the bus because I was starting to cry. Not like big ugly snotface crying, just the silent eyespill kind.

I had never read anything by Alison Bechdel before, though I knew about her from various interviews and whatnots over the years--nor had I ever read an entire graphic novel/memoir/etc, which is my bad. I can't say enough good things about this book, which is incredibly literate, elegant, evocative, moving, and beautiful. It's essentially Bechdel's attempt to come to terms with her father, who may or may not have killed himself, and the story moves fluidly back and forth throughout Bechdel's childhood and young adulthood. It's illustrated with scraps of family and national history, excerpts from literature, mythological references; it's part essay, part archive; it's a little bit like watching someone's family movies spliced together with a searingly intellectual and achingly emotional commentary. Highly recommended.

Also, if you want to be my friend on Goodreads, shoot me some email.

5 comments:

  1. So I stumbled upon your blog, read a few entries...and found you entertaining.

    I hope you don't mind.

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  2. I LOVED that book - so amazing and tragic. I only worry that the bar for graphic novels has now been set so high, you might not want to read any more. But should you - I have a list of some good ones that are not superhero related.

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  3. Playwright, all are welcome!

    KMS, recommend me some books.

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  4. Me too, me too! That book rocked. Plus, I met Alison Bechdel at a library conference last year and I slobbered all over her and generally made an ass of myself.

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  5. What are the chances? I was just given Fun Home as a gift and I DEVOURED it. I'm with ya: could've read it in one sitting easily, if things like sleep, and work, and going to the bathroom weren't issues.

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